Since I shared my favorite way to EAT asparagus yesterday, I thought today I’d share with you just how easy it is to grow . . .
The key with growing asparagus is patience. It is amazingly easy and the cool thing about it is that one plant can last for MANY years.
BUT . . .
you have to wait three years after planting it to harvest.
We put off planting asparagus for several years for that reason. However, one spring we realized that the three years were going to pass anyway, so why not just suck it up and plant the darn things. Six years later I am super thankful – because now when the rest of the garden is just starting to grow, we can enjoy that delicious, fresh asparagus every night. Yeah!
So, how to go about it:
First, pick a decent size and sunny area. Asparagus plants grow surprisingly large. Buy your plants from a reputable source – I’ve never grown from seed, so I can’t help you there. Dig a six-inch deep trench, put your plants in the trench (about one food apart) and cover with soil. Water and throw your kitchen scraps on them. Let them grow and the foliage die out over the next year – it will help feed the plants extra nutrients.
The second year, cut a few small spears, but don’t really harvest the plants. Let them flower and grow again.
FINALLY, in year three you can start cutting the shoots. Cut them at about six inches (close to the soil). Don’t cut every shoot in the plant – let some of them grow up and die out naturally. I’ve heard recommendations not to cut the plants down at all and recommendations to cut them in the spring. So I guess do what works for you – we cut them down in the spring so we can clear out the beds.
I know it’s a bit daunting to plant something now that you won’t enjoy this season, but you WILL get years of enjoyment out of these plants in the future. My mother’s plants lasted almost twenty years! Isn’t that amazing!
Enjoy your greens this spring!